More than half of people with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) also have trouble regulating their emotions, and that difficulty may be passed through families, a new study shows.
Researchers are calling this cluster of symptoms deficient emotional self-regulation (DESR). It involves quick bursts of outsized anger, frustration, impatience, or excitability in response to everyday events.
“Any sort of reflexive, emotionally laden reaction that would not be politic or thoughtful or helpful,” says study researcher Craig B. H. Surman, MD. Surman is an instructor in psychiatry in the Massachusetts General Hospital Pediatric Psychopharmacology and Adult ADHD Program.
“It’s not just people with mental health challenges that have issues regulating their emotions. Everyone does to some extent, but hopefully, in most cases it’s when people are really maxed out or strained or stressed,” Surman says.